In 1993, one dark night during fermentation pumpovers William Jarvis accidentally pumped a third of a tank of Cabernet Franc into a tank of Cabernet Sauvignon. Both he and our winemaker consultant Dimitri Tchelistcheff were distraught until the fermentation was complete and Dimitri declared the wine “not that bad”. The accidental blend, something akin to a Bordeaux Blend was an immediate hit with the winery guests and since 1996, Lake William has been made yearly with that same blend of red grapes always coming from the vineyards cooled by the breezes off Lake William.
William Jarvis made the mistake of his career in 1993, during midnight pump-overs, when he accidentally pumped a third of a tank of Cabernet Franc into a tank of Cabernet Sauvignon. The experience was devastating, but after the fermentation was complete, the winemaker Dimitri Tchelistcheff, who had not had much to say to William since the accident, said “this new blend turned out not that bad.” In fact, it kept getting better with age! It was enjoyed so much in the tasting room that this blend has become a staple ‘reserve blend’ here at Jarvis.
Following in the footsteps of its sensational predecessors, the 2012 Lake William is a beautiful expression of both of vintage and terroir. This wine showcases aromatic notes of white pepper, black olive, thyme and leather— all complemented by wonderful flavors of violet, lavender, baked pie and smoked meat. A bright and full-mouthfeel with balanced acidity makes this delightful wine approachable at an early age, yet has the structure to continue aging well for years to come.
Our Lake William blend is composed of grapes exclusively from the Jarvis estate in Napa Valley. Our hillside vineyards are planted in shallow volcanic soil about 1,000 feet above the valley floor, and benefit from both the diurnal shift that occurs at this high-elevation, as well as the cooling breezes coming off of Lake William that allow for a longer hang time. This cool growing microclimate provides optimum slow-ripening conditions resulting in full-bodied and complex fruit expression. This wine has gone through extended aging and is only released once our winemaker feels it is ready for you and your friends to enjoy.